Derek's Donuts: Recruiting Race for Iowa Target Alaric Jackson

Inside information on what is going on behind the scenes of the recruitment of Iowa target and coveted offensive tackle Alaric Jackson.

This version of Derek's donuts breaks down all the information you need to know about the situation surrounding offensive tackle Alaric Jackson, a coveted Iowa target, as well as some bonus content that is thrown in as well.

RACE FOR ALARIC JACKSON

It is indeed a race right now for the high-upside offensive tackle out of Detroit. Alaric Jackson was supposed to make his college decision yesterday with likely pick being Iowa but he used his twitter account to announce that his decision had been postponed. He's now struggling with his college choice that was thought to be between the Hawkeyes, Iowa State, and Nebraska but in reality it now appears to be down to Iowa and Michigan. 

Before he was set to make his verbal pledge yesterday Jackson was contacted by the Michigan staff and eventually offered by the Wolverines. The Detroit native is certainly considering that option now along with the opportunity that awaits him in Iowa City. Michigan offensive line coach Tim Drevno pulled the trigger on Jackson not long after they lost a commitment from offensive tackle Devery Hamilton to Stanford.

Is this over for the Hawkeyes? Not necessarily. Comfort and relationships tends to dominate college decisions and there's no question that Iowa has established the best with the massive lineman. However, Michigan is the home-state school and closer to home and a lot of times that dictates directions of where recruitments will go as well. There's no indication of which way this will go at this time. 

Reading the tea leaves myself, there's obviously a part of him at his core that looks at a Michigan offer strongly. I don't think you delay a decison that was already made 'just' to consider it. That kind of tells me where his heart is leaning. But then again the offer did not come until two days before Signing Day and as an obvoius back-up plan. Will that dampen the Wolverines' chances? You know that's the card the Hawkeyes' staff will be playing. The safe pick is to follow what he's done and where his heart seems to be leaning and that's toward Michigan's way. But it is not a done deal at this point.

Another caveat here is that, as seen played out in public, the Wolverines are in a bit of a numbers crunch when it comes to available scholarships remaining for the 2016 class. From what I have gathered it is not a guarantee that a spot will be open for Jackson despite the offer. That is not confirmed by any stretch, but a possibility, and if true, it could depend on who they are able to land. If they can't give him the green light soon enough, he could grow impatient and sign on the dotted line for Iowa where he's clearly a top priority at this time. 

What do the Hawkeyes do if Alaric Jackson does not go their way? It's almost too late to jump in on someone now. And they're going to want to wait this out with Jackson and hopefully receive good news. That means there's no clear alternative. If he elects to sign with Michigan, look for Noah Clayberg to get the final scholarship left instead of having to gray-shirt. 

BONUS MATERIAL

I have been able to confirm that quarterback C.J. Beathard did undergo surgery for a sports hernia, an operation that usually takes six weeks to recover from and be cleared for participation in football activities. What does that mean? Regardless if he's cleared or not, I expect Beathard to be limited throughout spring football. They won't want to risk further injury or push him harder than what is needed. He knows the offense and the job is his. What's most important for him is the mental reps and to be 100 percent healthy when fall camp arrives. This allows the other quarterbacks to take first-team reps to aid in their development when their number is called, if necessary for the 2016 season, but certainly for the 2017 season.

There's growing concern among the Iowa faithful about the point guard situation once Mike Gesell and Anthony Clemmons depart the program. Some have pointed to Peter Jok as a candidate but he's not a ball handler, he's a scorer. Some have pointed to Andrew Fleming and while he's more of a ball handler than Jok, I think they would only want to use him in that role sparingly, if at all.

It's going to be Christian Williams. Any playing time he is able to net from here on out is valuable, even if it's full of him making mistakes. They need him to make those mistakes now so he won't in the future. He's the guy. Jordan Bohannon will also be the guy. Those will be the two that are counted on for the 2016-2017 season. There will be growing pains but there's always growing pains when you have young point guards and not recruiting like Kentucky or Kansas or Duke and flooded with multiple five-star talents.

Is there room to bring in someone else? You lose four scholarship players after this year and have already signed four. That means it would have to come down to transfers. The first transfer that leaves opens up one scholarship and one would have to assume that has to be tossed Nicholas Baer's way. There would have to be a second departure to open up another slot. 


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